What Is Engineering Management? Everything You Need to Know


Engineering is a significant part of how humans evolved throughout time. Most people can name great engineers in modern and past times, and these practices create the foundations for the sector today. As the industry innovates, new and exciting methods come to the forefront. It’s here new engineers step up to the plate to advance companies further than ever before.


Seeking a career in engineering is just one piece of the puzzle in this vast field of work. Engineers are the base for many great inventions and processes in countless industries. However, those that blend business and engineering can move on to management areas to progress further in their career.


But what is engineering management? This article gives an insight into engineering management and what types of jobs are available when taking this pathway.

What is engineering management?


The foundations of engineering cover science, technology, and mathematics with a focus on designing processes, machines, and structures in a variety of areas. While engineers get to work on these complex and innovative tasks, organization is key to completing projects efficiently. That’s where engineering management comes in. In short, engineering management is a managerial role and support within this sector.


Having a solid foundation and experience in the engineering sector is vital for this role. Management jobs typically combine business and engineering to ensure projects are completed on time, within budget, and with as few errors or issues as possible. In addition, engineering tasks often bring many professionals together. So organizing and managing people is a significant part of the job.


Management attributes take some time to learn within the engineering field. Still, once you have the necessary skills, they can be used in a variety of scenarios.

What qualifications are required for a job in engineering management?


To progress in a career in engineering management, you typically need a postgraduate qualification such as an online masters degree in engineering management. This type of course encompasses a wide range of business and technical elements to give you a solid grounding in management techniques. Degrees focus on areas such as communication and organization and go further in other business areas such as HR, finance, and quality control.


This blend of skills makes a master’s degree an attractive offering to employers. If you’re currently working as an engineer, choosing an online degree alongside work is a great option. This gives you invaluable experience and knowledge to further your career without compromising on salary.


After a master’s degree, other certifications are available for continued professional development. These boost your resume further and provide an opportunity for promotion and salary enhancements.

What do you learn when studying for an engineering management degree?


Degrees in this area have a unique blend of business and engineering topics to digest. If you have a background in engineering, this course will improve your understanding of technical and practical applications. However, this is from a supportive and managerial style position.


Managing engineering projects and people is a significant undertaking, so necessary experience is vital. A degree will provide the essential tools in many areas of a project, such as budgeting, decision-making, problem-solving, and people and risk management.


The role of management in engineering also involves quality checks and consistency monitoring. This also goes hand in hand with training staff members on processes to ensure everyone is on the same page.


Each area is vital for anyone looking to pursue a career in this area. A degree will equip you with a solid foundation to manage projects and oversee a team.

What types of jobs are available?


The engineering sector is vast, and employers are keen to hire skilled and experienced professionals to ensure projects run smoothly. The scope to progress to senior roles is enhanced with an engineering management degree. Plus, there’s the chance to command more salary as responsibility increases.


Careers in engineering management focus on senior positions. Some common examples include:


  • Project manager
  • Lead analyst
  • Construction management engineer
  • Project engineer
  • Cost analyst
  • Technical manager


While there are fewer jobs in managerial roles within engineering compared to traditional engineering jobs, the sector is expected to grow 4% between 2020 and 2030. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary for engineering managers is $149,530.


The workplace for these roles varies within organizations. For example, some engineering management jobs work within an office environment, while others are on-site. So if you’re thinking about senior positions later in your career, this could be an excellent opportunity to move within a firm to different surroundings.

How much experience is needed to become an engineering manager?


Management roles in engineering firms are not something you can jump into straight after college. Instead, good managers hone their craft for many years before taking the next steps to senior roles. The Bureau of Labor Statistics states this type of job requires at least five years of experience due to the nature and seniority of positions.


While detailed knowledge and engineering experience are required, leading teams is another important aspect of management. There will be opportunities to lead team projects and oversee tasks to completion throughout your career. This experience will boost your chances of promotion to higher levels. Plus, it supports the demands of people management overall.


If you lack experience in team leadership, studying for a master’s degree gives you the opportunity to practice techniques. Many courses provide individual and group work where you address practical problems to offer functional solutions. This collaborative work gives you transferable skills within the workplace to improve the management of people. It includes areas such as communication, delegation, problem-solving, and networking.

Reasons to study engineering management


For those interested in engineering management and the opportunities it brings, studying a qualification to support your journey is a great choice. Engineering is a field with significant advancements and innovations every day, so personal progression is vital for influencing positive change in the sector.


If you’re considering taking the next steps in management, there are numerous reasons to take the leap. Check out some of the top reasons why below:

Stay ahead of the competition


The field of engineering is naturally a place for innovation, and a manager’s job is to identify trends and implement new and exciting ideas. Studying an engineering management course highlights the disruptive change within the industry and prepares you to influence decisions and plans within a company.


This is a natural progression for engineers as it solidifies knowledge and understanding in current job roles. It also prepares you to take the next step and impress employers with advanced attributes and capabilities.

Progress your career


One of the best reasons to study for an engineering management course is the opportunities it can bring. Being a leader in engineering is a natural step for anyone looking to progress in the field. These positions allow you to share more expertise and creativity with different levels of management. Plus, you’ll be leading a team to success.


If you’ve been working in engineering for some time, management roles also provide an exciting advancement to support others in their career.

Staying ahead of technological changes


Technology plays a significant role in all engineering sectors. However, the changes and innovations in this area are also dramatic. Studying a management course will equip you to face these changes head-on. Technology is a critical element of improving processes and workflows, but it also presents challenges.


With sufficient training and expertise, you will be able to determine strengths and weaknesses in new technological advancements and how they will help the company. It also provides a chance to work through issues to ensure efficient solutions.

Supporting others


Another part of management roles in engineering is people management. As a leader, it is your job to provide support, guidance, and instruction for the job at hand. In most cases, being a manager goes beyond the work. Managing a team demands a different style of management to everyday tasks, and studying a degree will improve your skills in each area.


As a successful leader, you’ll also enjoy the feeling of helping others within their career. Employees that have a good connection with management are more productive and engaged with tasks. It’s also helpful to get feedback from team members. This helps to improve your techniques and management style to enhance your success in the role.

Bridging the gap between business acumen and engineering


There is often a noticeable separation between business practices and engineering. However, studying a management course in this field brings the two together. As an engineer, you are well versed in technical skills and technologies associated with engineering. But as an engineering manager, you take this a step further to understand how engineering works alongside profit-making decisions.


The skills learned in management courses equip you to talk to people at all levels. Not only that, but you’ll be able to translate information from everyone at the production level to senior management. This vital role bridges the gap between staff and management. It provides an open channel of communication to ensure work is carried out efficiently.


Multi-skilled engineering management candidates are sought-after by firms. This type of role is generally more challenging to succeed at, so becoming an expert in this field is valuable.

Contribute to the future of engineering


Anyone involved in the application and study of engineering is helping to shape the future of the sector. There are a variety of areas to get involved in, and as a leader, you’ll be heading up the next generation of skilled engineers.


Each engineering sector is fast-moving, so your skills and expertise will contribute to improving processes and innovations, no matter how small. Management also has access to impressive talent and resources to identify the best fit for a company. Whether it’s hiring the next batch of engineering graduates or choosing advanced technology to boost production, a leader is at the forefront of selecting the best fit for the job.


There are many reasons why studying engineering management is an ideal career choice.

Is an engineering management course right for you?


Engineering management is a natural progression for many professionals, but how do you know whether it’s the right step for you? Unfortunately, there are no hard and fast rules to taking a degree course but look at some key areas below to help you decide.

Fast-tracking your career


Many people are eager to advance their careers, and a course in engineering management can provide a fast track to management styles and techniques. The only downside is the lack of experience may present some challenges when learning advanced topics. If you’re looking to take this route, speak with the university to gauge the right pathway.

Enhancing your experience


If you already have several years of experience in engineering, management courses are a great progression when applying for higher roles. With a solid foundation behind you, you’ll be able to tackle complex areas and learn new topics to develop your skills.

Manager looking to improve skills


Some individuals find themselves in management roles without formal training. While this is a natural progression, a course in engineering management can help to improve your skills with education and practical application. In addition, some degrees are obtainable via online study, so you can work alongside gaining a qualification.

What types of engineering management courses are available?


Fortunately, there are numerous courses and degrees to choose from. Popular options include studying for a master’s degree online due to the flexibility of the schedule and deadlines. This also makes an excellent option for those that can’t make traditional class-based lessons due to time or location. Online degrees provide the same expert tuition and course content as on-campus lessons. You also gain various transferable skills such as decision-making, collaboration, software skills, and problem-solving.


When choosing the right pathway for your next career move in engineering, there are many factors to consider. However, using the above guide can help you navigate the array of opportunities open to skilled people looking to make a career in engineering management.